Nevada's New Atomic License Plates - 8 News NOW

George Knapp, Investigative Reporter

Nevada's New Atomic License Plates

Posted: Updated:
Troy Wade Troy Wade
Original license plate design Original license plate design
Troy Wade of the Nevada Test Site Historical Foundation Troy Wade of the Nevada Test Site Historical Foundation
Atomic license plate now available Atomic license plate now available

If you are looking for a specialty license plate that packs a punch, the State of Nevada has just the ticket. A license plate that commemorates the contributions made by the Nevada Test Site is now on sale -- but approval for the new plate wasn't easy to get. The I-Team's George Knapp has the story.

Troy Wade said, "This is an icon that's now associated with evil" Troy Wade of the Nevada Test Site Historical Foundation has been pushing for the approval of a specialized license plate for more than three years now, not only because he personally participated in several atomic weapons tests back in the day, but because of his involvement with the Atomic Testing Museum, a world-class exhibit dedicated to the history and importance of the Nevada Test Site and its role in the Cold War.

In 2002, a statewide contest selected the mushroom cloud design as the best representation of the test site's contribution. The DMV and the Nevada Highway Patrol gave their okay, but at the last minute a few state lawmakers grumbled that an atomic license plate might be seen as tacit support for the proposed nuclear repository at Yucca Mountain, so the governor nixed the idea.

Troy Wade said, "Strictly the cloud. The thought was the theme that the State of Nevada could oppose Yucca Mountain and allow people to walk around with a mushroom cloud on their license plate. Frankly, I didn't make that connection."

Nearly all of the nuclear waste slated to be buried at Yucca Mountain was generated by civilian power plants, not by the nuclear weapons program, so opposing the mushroom cloud plate because of Yucca Mountain seemed kind of silly to Wade and others. A better reason might have been because of post 9/11 national security concerns.

The new design, already approved and already on sale, features an outline of the same Nevada Test Site and the unmistakeable atomic symbolism, like its predecessor, but no cloud.

"This one, although it's part of the same thing, is okay, so..." Wade isn't about to gripe though. A portion of the proceeds from the sales of these plates will go to help support the Atomic Testing Museum, which has received rave reviews but is still struggling to attract visitors. Wade hopes that former test site workers, and others, will step up to the plate, as he has done. "The new license plates are available at the Department of Motor Vehicles. Low numbers are available. This is the lowest number. It's my car."

Darn. So, who's got number two?

The test site plates cost $61 dollars and $25 dollars from each sale goes to the Atomic testing Museum.

Contact I-Team Investigative Reporter George Knapp

  • Las Vegas NewsLas Vegas NewsMore>>

  • BREAKING NEWS: Juvenile struck by car, dies on scene

    BREAKING NEWS: Juvenile struck by car, dies on scene

    Friday, April 18 2014 1:45 AM EDT2014-04-18 05:45:59 GMT
    LAS VEGAS -- Metro Police are investigating a critical injury accident that's left a four-year-old dead shortly after 9:30p.m. near North Lamb and Dillon Avenue. Investigators said the juvenile died at the scene and there’s word on what caused the crash.8 News Now will have more on this developing story.More>>
    LAS VEGAS -- Metro Police are investigating a critical injury accident that's left a four-year-old dead shortly after 9:30p.m. near North Lamb and Dillon Avenue. Investigators said the juvenile died at the scene and there’s word on what caused the crash.8 News Now will have more on this developing story.More>>
  • Pedestrian hit by commercial truck

    Pedestrian hit by commercial truck

    Thursday, April 17 2014 10:02 PM EDT2014-04-18 02:02:30 GMT
    A pedestrian was struck by a commercial truck near Decatur Boulevard and Twain Avenue Thursday night, Metro Police said.More>>
    A pedestrian was struck by a commercial truck near Decatur Boulevard and Twain Avenue Thursday night, Metro Police said.More>>
  • Cliven Bundy snubs letters from BLM

    Cliven Bundy snubs letters from BLM

    Thursday, April 17 2014 7:50 PM EDT2014-04-17 23:50:21 GMT
    Local rancher Cliven Bundy continues to ignore the federal government after taking his cattle back, defying a federal court order. And that’s not all he is ignoring.More>>
    Local rancher Cliven Bundy continues to ignore the federal government after taking his cattle back, defying a federal court order. And that’s not all he is ignoring.More>>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KLAS. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.